Outbound Marketing- What You Need To Know?
Have you ever wondered how many advertisements do you see in a single day? On average, a person sees up to 5000 advertisements in a day. The figure covers all kinds of ads, the ones you see on the TV, billboards, or the ones you encounter online. Modern-day marketers divide these into two main categories based on diverse parameters. Outbound & Inbound Marketing. This article is focused on outbound marketing with all essential information of its counterpart. Let’s discuss these two marketing strategies in detail.
Outbound Marketing- Basics, Explanation & Examples
We all have been exposed to outbound marketing in our lives, but most people don’t know what falls into this marketing classification. Outbound Marketing is an umbrella term used for all the traditional marketing/advertising methods in which a product or service is pushed on a customer rather than stimulating their interest. All the conventional marketing tactics, e.g., advertising via TV, Radio advertising, Print Ads in magazines, newspapers, flyers or brochures in direct mail, telemarketing, outdoor advertising & cold calls, fall into this category.
The basic idea behind Outbound Marketing is that the more people see your ads or message, the higher the response chance. Back in the days, before the internet took over, these outbound marketing strategies were profitable. After the digital awakening, these tactics became expensive. The competition was raised, so marketers were compelled to shift to another method known as inbound marketing, to gain more attention from people without being irritating.
Outbound Marketing is Intrusive:
Outbound marketing strategies are not targeted, which makes them less effective and costly. Finding a targeted audience and creating personalized ads and content is essential to thriving in this competitive business world, which was absent in outbound marketing. Contemporary consumers don’t like to be interrupted, which is a fundamental characteristic of outbound marketing.
Remember the last time you watched your favorite show on the television, and some advertisement interrupted and ruined your mood. Back in the day’s customers were more patient, but modern communication has empowered people to avoid these interruptions, reducing intrusive outbound marketing strategy.
Online Outbound Marketing :
Outbound marketing is not only done offline, but there are many examples of outbound marketing on the internet too. Junk emails, Ads on search engines (PPC), Ads on YouTube videos & banner ads are some common ways of outbound marketing in the online world. The content and primary objective of outbound tactics is to increase sales without providing any value to the customers.
Problems With Outbound Marketing:
Outbound marketing is around for ages, and most businesses still allocate a significant budget for it. They consider it a way of doing business without recognizing it’s reduced impact and the associated obstacles. The marketing trends are evolving, and in the age when inbound marketing tactics are becoming more powerful, companies need to understand the issues surrounding outbound marketing. Some of them are:
Limited or no way to track the return on investment.
More methods being introduced to avoid unsolicited ads.
More costly to produce and distribute.
Lower probability of conversions.
To avoid these problems linked to outbound marketing, every company or brand must incorporate inbound marketing strategies in their marketing plans to ensure the campaigns’ outcomes are in their favor and the customers could gain maximum from the efforts.
Inbound Marketing- Basics, Explanation, and Examples:
The more you search online, you will find many different versions of definitions explaining Inbound Marketing. Hubspot has its own, and Wikipedia describes it with marketing forms that can be counted as inbound marketing. Let’s simplify it and put it in a better word for people reading.
Inbound Marketing consists of all techniques and methods used by marketers to draw customers towards a company’s products or services in an organic way. This is achieved by creating and publishing valuable content for people and precisely the target audience that will match their interests. When people are attracted to a company naturally, it will help brands or companies to make more conversions and sales. Inbound Marketing tactics allows companies to retain their customers better because it is focused on pulling them rather than trying to reach them via repeated advertisements to garner attention.
Why is Inbound Marketing better than traditional marketing?
The consumer of this generation is obsessed with the internet, and traditional marketing techniques are usually done off the internet. When an unlimited information source “Google” is just a few click away, people don’t rely on other ways to look for their products or services they need which make traditional marketing methods like direct mail or newspaper ads less effective.
The Internet is everyone’s best friend. When a person is looking for something online, they discover infinite options and a plethora of useful information that will make the purchase decision easier. In this case, the customer is viewing information that a brand or company has already published online via a blog post, social media posts, and consumers reach them and not the other way round. All these strategies where a customer is pulled towards a company are considered as “Inbound Marketing,” which is way more useful than conventional marketing methods in today’s generation.
Inbound Marketing is a long game, and you need to be consistent and patient to see the desired outcomes. It is not very straightforward too and involves different processes, unlike outbound marketing. Let’s discuss them briefly.
Process of Inbound Marketing:
Every loyal customer was once a stranger, and the first objective of an inbound marketing campaign is to attract people. Multiple types of techniques are used to get the attention of strangers. Companies can create a valuable blog on their website to regularly publish read-worthy informative content to engage new people. SEO will also help attract new people from search engines, and SEO optimized content on a blog helps increase traffic on the company website. A strong social media presence is also vital to attracting the public as most people look for a company’s social media page first for reviews and comments.
When a user on the internet becomes a visitor to your website or social media pages, the next step is to turn them into leads. This is one of the most crucial phases of inbound marketing, and this is where visitors are expecting something in return to give you their contact information. Visitors on landing pages must be provided quality information and content and provide them with every information they seek to decide about the purchase. If they trust you enough at this stage, you can use their contact information to market to them in the future.
In this stage, the leads are converted into customers. In this crucial marketing stage, tools like email marketing, lead nurturing, social media, and marketing automation are used to check if the generated leads have the potential of turning into customers and then later handed to the sales team at an accurate time in case you are a B2B company so they can complete the sale. In case you are a B2C Company, you educate the prospects enough that they make the ultimate purchase decision in this stage.
When you have successfully converted a stranger into a customer, you can create unique content that is useful for your customers and leads at the same time. Social media marketing and email marketing is beneficial to keep your customers engaged. A happy customer is better than any other marketing strategy. When a satisfied customer promotes your company, it has a massive impact on your leads and someone totally unknown to your business.
Outbound & Inbound Marketing- The Differences
Permissive vs. Interruptive
Inbound marketing is focused on drawing customers via active search and their permission, while outbound marketing methods interrupt user activity.
One Way vs. Two Way
Inbound marketing allows two-way communication, and people can interact with the brand. In contrast, outbound marketing is done via mass media, allowing one-way communication without any customer engagement.
User-Focused vs. Brand Focused:
Inbound marketing, the content, and message are based on what users will like to see, what keeps them entertained and what solves their problem. On the contrary, outbound marketing highlights the brand and the associated benefits to persuade people instantly.
Quantifiable vs. Immeasurable:
Inbound marketing tactics are trackable by digital analytic tools, but outbound marketing is immeasurable, and the process of tracking is challenging and inaccurate.
Educational Message vs. Forced Message:
Inbound marketing content is valuable and informative for the customers, while outbound marketing content is created focused on the brand, and most of the time appears forced and complicated.
Outbound Marketing Techniques:
Now when you know the basics of outbound marketing and how it is different from inbound marketing, it is time to discuss some basic outbound techniques. Keep scrolling to read more.
The type of email you often receive in your spam inbox and when you don’t have a conversation history with the sender falls in the category of cold email. In the early internet days, it used to be the best way to reach new customers, but when social media took over, the response to a cold email was reduced, but still, marketers widely use this outbound technique as it has a high ROI. A cold email sent to a target audience with a personalized message has an improved impact rather than old conventional sales ones.
A cold call is no different from a cold email, and it is one of the most widely used sales and outbound marketing techniques to this date. Retail companies widely use the cold call method to attract new customers and for the sale of their products. The fear of rejection must not come in between your potential customer and your company, and it is an undeniable fact that a cold call is one of the most effective ways to sell a product if done in the right way.
Direct Mail Marketing is another effective strategy and helps reach consumers who haven’t responded to any other marketing method. If your target audience is older, direct mail can be handy to reach them and market your product or services.
Flyers & Brochures :
Distributing flyers and brochures is a classic outbound marketing method, but handing out to people in public is not a recommended strategy anymore, and interrupting people during their daily activities doesn’t seem like a smart approach. The best way is to find an event or conference related to your business type and distribute flyers at the event. Flyers are easy to produce and cheap. For more significant impact, don’t forget to offer something unique on a flyer.
PPC or pay per click is an online outbound marketing strategy that allows marketers and advertisers to run ads on search engines. When people search for a product or service using a keyword relevant to your business, they see your advertisement on the top of the search engine results. Some marketers now believe PPC advertising as an inbound strategy ( Hubspot experts considered it an outbound strategy previously ) and have some substantial reason to back their claims. Still, it mostly has an outbound marketing strategy’s characteristics but quite useful compared to other conventional ones.
The core purpose of every marketing campaign, regardless of the methodology, is to boost sales. Inbound marketing has skyrocketing popularity, but outbound marketing can be advantageous if done right and in specific scenarios. The right marketing strategy is one that combines the best of both worlds. Outbound marketing yields prompt results and has the potential to build awareness conveniently, while inbound is time-consuming but has extended-lasting benefits. It’s best to strike a sharp balance to succeed in the upcoming, more advanced digital time.